I’m pretty damned sick and tired of all this “fiscal cliff” bullshit that is transpiring in Washington, D.C.
Our elected representatives are going about the nation’s business, indeed OUR business with seemingly no concern for the real people outside the beltway. They do not have the guts to deal with any national financial issues in a straightforward way that serves the PEOPLE.
But, surprisingly, (well, not so to me, I have been seeing this crap for the past few years) much of the public seems to be overly concerned with what they imagine or have been falsely told our reps in the Capitol receive as pay and benefits.
Folks, for the last time Congress does not have its own superior health care insurance plan that gives them access to secret cures for hangnails and male-pattern baldness. They do not, upon election, have a guarantee of their Congressional salary for life. And hey, you idiots, they do pay into Social Security.
Moreover they are subject to the same laws we all are including the laws of physics. The rumors of them using teleportation for trips to their home districts are greatly exaggerated.
But let me tell you what Congress, or at least large segments of it, are doing or not doing that is in no way beneficial to the good old U S of A, hard money edition.
They oppose funding for public broadcasting and Planned Parenthood that totals less than $1 billion per year, but somehow have qualms over cuts in the extremely bloated Defense budget which wastes billions. Of course the latter pays dividends by increasing private sector spending on funerals.
Many oppose a slight increase in a tax rate for an extremely small minority of people who have been the only income group to see true gains over the past thirty years. A tax rate that, for someone earning $1.5 million a year would result in costing them approximately $50,000. Gosh, one less shipment of caviar to the mansion might be unbearable.
But many favor for spending cuts in Social Security which, by law is really not to be used for deficit reduction because it is self-sustaining.
One of the devices that may be used in this goal is to utilize a new formula for Cost Of Living Adjustments (COLA) to benefits. Without going into detail here (addressed in a previous post) this means any hikes in benefits will be less in the future. Never mind that my own monthly benefit has increased by but $36 the past three years, with no raise in two of them.
Ok, I’ve got a dog in that fight but I have no personal interest in subsidies to billion dollar businesses, agribusiness conglomerates, the drug war/private prison complex, warrantless searches and wiretaps under the Patriot Act or bunches of other areas of spending that could easily be cut if not outright eliminated.
Instead there are too many who would invest less in education and infrastructure that would actually strengthen America.
Now comes health care.
All kinds of perversions, permutations, variances, cuts, qualification age-raising and who knows what other foolishness may be used to “rein in Medicare costs”. Well, citizens, we need to rein in Medicare costs because we need to rein in medical care costs. I don’t have a comprehensive plan for doing so but a good start could be made by adapting Medicare principles to apply to the general public.
There are allegations that this would be socialized medicine with huge bureaucracies, rationing of care and the like. Private insurance would be better, so the argument goes. Well guess what, sports fans, the fucking private insurance companies have their own bloated bureaucracies that result in higher administrative costs for profit margins, executive pay, and also lead these private companies into rationing care.
I assure you if we looked at all areas of government spending we would find that the cost benefit ratio is much better with putting our resources into education, health care and infrastructure than in killing Taliban and making millionaires and billionaires richer.
Does this make me sound angry? Damn fucking right I am angry. Blame Congress, not me.